no comments

What happens when you drink a gallon of water a day for a month

A Prescription for Wellness Health Coach Testimonial

Ever wonder if you’re drinking enough water throughout the day, and—if not—the affect it has on your body? So did one of our Prescription for Wellness health coaches, Nicole Connor. She challenged herself to drink a gallon of water a day for a month and tracked her journey. The results? Read on to find out.

Hydration. We hear about the importance of drinking water throughout the day all the time. Unfortunately, I always forget to keep sipping as I go about my daily routine. I’ve known it was a problem for a while; I usually don’t even notice my thirst until I start drinking.

With all that in mind, I decided to see what would happen if I forced myself to drink a gallon of water a day for a month. Yes, 16 cups of water. There I knew there were going to be challenges, especially in access and remembering. I had to be very deliberate about ensuring I had water around me at all times to cue me to drink regularly. But that was just the beginning …

What I used to drink a gallon of water a day

I carried a 25 oz (roughly 3 cup) water bottle around with me. Initially it was difficult, but after some quick health coaching with a friend (yes, health coaches even need health coaching at times), I came up with the idea to fill my water bottle up right after emptying it—or as soon as possible. That pretty much did the trick most days.

How it made me feel

In terms of compliance, most days I was pretty good. There was one day I didn’t drink until later in the day, leading to a state of overhydration, where I felt nauseated. But overall, it got easier as time went on.

I found, for the most part, that drinking a gallon of water a day—or even more than a gallon—was an adequate amount for me. There may be several factors involved in this, including the fact that I have a high activity level and it was hot and humid outside at the time of my experiment. Both of these things lead to more sweat production which is a quick way to lose hydration.

Overall outcomes of my experiment

I peed. A lot. At the beginning. Initially, there was an adjustment period where I had to pee about every 20 minutes. However, this only lasted about a week or so as my body adjusted to the increased intake.

My sleep improved. When I didn’t have to get up in the middle of the night to pee, that is. Overall, I felt I was sleeping more deeply. However, on occasion if I drank water too late in the day, I would need to wake up in the middle of the night to go.

My skin looked great. My skin cleared up and had more of a glow than normal.

I had more of an urge to eat fruits and vegetables. This one I wasn’t necessarily expecting but as I drank more water, I found myself naturally drawn more to foods that have a higher water content, like fruits and vegetables.

My hunger and boredom eating decreased. Overall, I was less hungry and because I was drinking more and less inclined to go look for food if I was bored, because the water quenched the boredom (pun intended).

I was thirstier than ever. You would think I would be less thirsty but one of the surprising outcomes was that I craved water way more. I was more aware of my thirst, whereas it barely registered before. You would think after drinking a gallon of water in a day, my thirst would have been satisfied, but I found myself wanting even more on more than a few occasions.

The habit set in. After a month of drinking this way, I am now used to just keeping water around and drinking it throughout the day whereas before, that habit wasn’t engrained. I don’t even have to consciously think about it, because I crave water and think about water more naturally. So, am I going to keep up the routine of drinking a gallon of water a day? I probably won’t track every day or count the cups, but I am ultimately going to keep up with having a filled water bottle around me when I am around my house and elsewhere. I know I wasn’t getting enough water throughout the day before this experiment, so I am hoping I can keep up the momentum I have built moving forward and stay in a good state of hydration.